I hear sellers and business owners tell me they “Don’t want to be too pushy” at least 5 times a week.
Trust me, if you have to say that, you’ve never been “too pushy”.
Many of us have had negative experiences with sales people that have a bulldozer mentality. They’re not afraid to run over you to get an answer and don’t let any resistance, objection, or NO, get in their way.
Yes. They’re out there. We’ve all met someone who gave us sales whiplash. They’re not effective, and they’re being replaced, thankfully, because no one tolerates that anymore.
I have to politely call “BS”, though, that you think to make more than one or two phone calls is being pushy or obnoxious. To be effective, to SERVE your customers, you’ve got to show up in multiple places and keep getting your messages in front of your prospects. If you earnestly believe you can help someone, you must persist!
So how do you do that without being a pest?
You’ve got to mix it up.
The best prospecting methodology is to surround your prospects and consistently deliver value in the places where they are spending time and searching for insights.
You can’t be a one-hit wonder and expect great results.
One phone call or
One connection request or
One “like” or
One email . . .
Does not make memorable, lasting impressions.
Right now, research suggests it takes at least 8 attempts/contacts/touches to reach a prospect (According to SiriusDecisions.com).
Imagine making 8 phone calls attempts and leaving 8 voicemails. Do you think you have it in you to go the distance with 8 unreturned phone calls? Do you have enough compelling material to make 8 voicemails interesting?
Imagine you’re trying to reach a prospect and you try to engage them 8 or more times over the course of a month:
- You call and leave a voicemail.
- You follow up with an email.
- You connect with them on LinkedIn.
- You comment on something they posted on LinkedIn.
- You go to an industry specific event you’d expect to see them attend.
- You meet and make a connection to someone from their same company at the industry event.
- You call the new connection and begin a relationship.
- You email your prospect referencing the person you met and you send your insights from the keynote speaker.
- You follow up with the connection from the industry event and offer insights or to make connections for them and ask for an introduction.
- They provide an introduction to your prospect.
- You follow up the introduction with a call to your prospect.
- You invite your prospect to attend an event as your guest.
- You email them links to an announcement that their competitor is expanding in their market.
This, my friends, is SELLING: Articulating your value. Persisting with integrity. Showing up consistently.
Let your competitors fumble with the one call or two emails and give up – while you’re surrounding your buyers and moving higher into their sightline – making it more difficult to ignore you because you are demonstrating your value and commitment to be the provider they choose.
To quote one of the best prospecting and cold calling practitioners I know, Dianna Geairn – The Irreverent Sales Girl, “I hope my competition decides to not cold call and sticks with a few social media touches. Heck yeah! They’ll be connecting and tweeting while I’m walking through the door meeting the customer!”
She knows what works for her and most importantly, she knows how and where to reach her target customers. She does her homework, plans her approach, makes her calls, sends her follow up, and begins to show up in multiple places.
Most sales people are still giving up after just TWO attempts. According to Marketing Donut, 44% of sales people give up after just ONE follow up!
For someone like Dianna, that’s music to her ears because she’s going to go the distance to meaningfully connect with her prospects. She doesn’t give up because she knows her buyers are busy people juggling dozens of priorities and they may intend to respond, reply, or call her back, but those priorities are persistent too.
Here are the real reasons why sellers give up after just two attempts:
- It’s hard. You’re not getting immediate results. You take that as rejection and give up.
- You can’t think of what else to say or do that’s compelling.
- You don’t have a good CRM or process to make your follow-up or next steps consistent.
Here’s the good news: all three of those are fixable issues.
First, change your mindset. Being ignored means you need to mix up your approach, keep delivering value, and keep trying.
Next, you need better messages. Create a bank of emails, phone prompts, case studies, white papers, and insights that are compelling and focused on helping your customer make decisions.
Lastly, create a workflow and process that works for you. Most CRMs have template structures, workflows, and task/event reminders.
Don’t hand over victory to your competitors (especially Apathy and Status Quo). Be the person that goes the distance FOR YOUR CUSTOMERS.
Sure, you may have some that tell you to “Stop calling” or “No thanks, not interested” or “Lose my number”. That’s entirely possible. But don’t let the fear of those potential few rejections make you think you’re being “too pushy”.
You’ll have MANY more wins and a loyal group of new customers that appreciate you were willing to be persistent and keep showing up because you want their business.
Until next time, stop hoping, start SELLING!
PS – If you need a “push” to overcome this fear of being too pushy, I’ve got just the thing for you. I’m not afraid of being pushy to get you to your goals! Reach out, drop me an email, and let’s talk.